T-Mobile, MetroPCS unite to battle larger rivals

T-Mobile, MetroPCS are combining their struggling cellphone businesses in a deal aimed at letting them compete better with their three larger rivals — Verizon Wireless, AT&T Inc. and Sprint Nextel Corp.
By BARBARA ORTUTAY and JUERGEN BAETZ Published: October 4, 2012
Advertisement
;

T-Mobile and MetroPCS have agreed to combine their struggling cellphone businesses in a deal aimed at letting them compete better with their three larger rivals.

The combined company will use the T-Mobile brand and have about 42.5 million subscribers. Although T-Mobile will stay No. 4 among U.S. wireless companies, it will get access to more space on the airwaves, a critical factor as cellphone carriers try to expand their capacity for wireless broadband.

That could ultimately mean more choices and better services for customers, though Forrester Research analyst Charles Golvin doesn't believe the deal will make a “revolutionary difference” for U.S. cellphone customers. That said, MetroPCS customers will probably have to buy new phones at some point over the next three years as they are moved over to T-Mobile's network.

Both companies have faltered in the highly competitive U.S. cellphone market led by Verizon Wireless and AT&T Inc. T-Mobile has 33.2 million subscribers, well behind No. 3 Sprint Nextel Corp's 56 million. MetroPCS is even further back, ranking fifth with 9.3 million.

Last year, T-Mobile USA's German parent, Deutsche Telekom AG, tried to sell the U.S. cellphone business to AT&T for $39 billion. Getting more access to airwaves was the main reason AT&T wanted T-Mobile.

Regulators rejected that proposed purchase.

Under the new deal, Deutsche Telekom will hold a 74 percent stake in the combined company.


Advertisement


Trending Now



AROUND THE WEB

  1. 1
    Conservative Activist Claims Women Paid The Same As Men Won't Find Husbands
  2. 2
    Report: Thunder to open playoffs on Saturday
  3. 3
    Former Sonics guard Gary Payton: Durant, Westbrook 'the new era'
  4. 4
    GOP consulting firm employee starts 'Boats 'N Hoes PAC'
  5. 5
    Why One Man Traveled Almost 3,000 Miles To Take On The Federal Government At A Ranch In Nevada
+ show more